Lovins said Swedish researchers have put energy security above smart and effective energy use, and construction and design industries have also lagged. Perhaps it was the big build-out of nuclear energy and hydro power in Sweden during the 70's that made industries complacent.
Skanska, one of the largest construction companies in Sweden, launched the energy-efficient ModernaHus concept in 2005. ModernaHus are largely prefab 3-8 story apartment buildings that can be 50 percent more efficient than the industry standard. But while Skanska has sold two ModernaHus complexes - a total of 70 apartments - to two developers, neither developer chose Skanska's Energi+ add-on which would cut the apartments' energy use another 20 percent by employing heat pumps, solar panels, low-flow faucets and individual metering. Short-sighted thinking in Lovins' book.
But there's some good news.
NCC is also betting that passive solar housing will get to be popular in Sweden. Sweden is participating in the European project CEPHEUS to establish a standard for building passive solar homes and built a 26-unit CEPHEUS project near Gothenburg. NCC said it believes between 5 - 10 percent of homes will be passive solar within the next five years. ::Miljorapporten.se